• 2021 Virtual Mississippi River Delta Institute featuring Waters to the Sea®

    Free for Educators!

    Virtual Mississippi River Delta Institute - June 21-23, 2021

    Online Application

    At the end of the Mississippi’s long journey to the Gulf of Mexico, America’s greatest river passes through a delta of unparalleled richness and complexity. Teeming with wildlife and ecological variety, a cradle for a fascinating blend of cultural traditions, and one of the most endangered environments on the planet—the Delta is all this and more. 

    Join us June 21-23, 2021 for the Virtual Mississippi River Delta Institute (VMRDI)—a free professional development program combining online and hands-on activities to inspire, educate and prepare 3rd-8th grade teachers to engage students in STEM disciplines through experiential, inquiry-based investigations. 

    It will incorporate expert presentations about Delta environments, rich media resources ready for use with students, community-building with other educators, and independent offline explorations.

    This workshop is a component of a national initiative to develop a community of water educators. The Rivers Institutes are highly acclaimed professional development workshops developed by CGEE in St. Paul, Minnesota. For more information on the Rivers Institutes and CGEE, please visit the Graduate Programs and Professional Development page.

    Headwaters to the Delta Workshop Goals

    To increase teachers' knowledge of Mississippi River related content, enhance STEM-focused investigation skills, expand literacy skills, and help guide the development of meaningful, engaging investigations for students learning remotely and in the classroom.


    All elementary and middle school formal and informal teachers, as well as teacher teams are welcome to apply. 

    Activities to Accomplish Objectives

    During the River Institute experience, participants will:

    • Discover interactive, online modules that explore the Mississippi River Delta

    • Utilize Waters to the Sea® multimedia learning tools and other classroom resources

    • Create plans to implement science, inquiry, and literacy investigations in online, in-person and hybrid classrooms 

    • Articulate virtual field investigations through accurate scientific observations

    • Conduct inquiry-based investigations of riverine and marsh habitats, delta geology, coastal engineering, and urban water management

    • Learn, create and implement new strategies using science notebooks

    • Share strategies for helping students ‘think like a scientist,’ ‘design like an engineer,’ and ‘write like an author’

    Each Rivers Institute Participant Will Receive

    • Three full days of hybrid instruction combining online components and outdoor experiential learning with live whole- and small-group discussion;

    • 18 Continuing Education Credits; 

    • The Waters to the Sea® multimedia tool and additional resources for your classroom; and

    • The option to purchase two graduate-level credits at a reduced rate from Hamline University.

    Stipends for St. Bernard Parish educators

    A limited number of $150 stipends are available to teachers attending from St. Bernard Parish. Up to $700 of additional financial support for related school supplies and field trips is available for a limited number of St. Bernard Parish teachers who implement the program in the classroom. 

    The 2021 Virtual Mississippi River Delta Institute is funded through the generous financial assistance of the Meraux Foundation. With their ongoing support CGEE enables hundreds of teachers to improve the way they understand and teach science, and help thousands of students connect with the natural world.

    Waters to the Sea®

    Rivers Institute participants will receive and explore a suite of multimedia learning modules designed to help students in grades 3-8 understand critical water issues through engaging stories and visualizations. Check out Waters to the Sea® New interactive multimedia learning materials about the Delta’s natural and cultural history are being made available for this institute through the Headwaters to the Delta Initiative.

    The Virtual Mississippi River Delta Institute and new interactive multimedia learning materials about the Delta’s natural and cultural history are made possible by significant funding from the Meraux Foundation and the Brown Foundation, and created in collaboration with the National Park Service, University of New Orleans and Fletcher Technical Community College. Thank you to all of our partners. 

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    Learn about the other Teacher Professional Development opportunities at the Center for Global Environmental Education.